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Blackouts

Discussion in 'Small Talk' started by Linkachu, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. Linkachu

    Linkachu Hero of Pizza
    Staff Member Administrator

    Kinda funny that I was writing this up - a topic about power outages - and was just about done when the power went out again. XP

    Usually when we get power outages here, it's due to really violent wind or snow storms - anything that can knock down powerlines or power poles. Today however, on this beautiful sunny spring morning, the power for pretty well the entire Eastern part of the island went out due to a fire at one of the main electrical centres in the area. Schools had to shut down. Businesses closed up. And the roads were bloody insane. They were filled with vehicles, and NOBODY seemed to understand what they're supposed to do at a 4-way stop when the lights are out... Driving into work was freakin' scary >_>

    Yeah, that was the funny part. For some reason, pockets of power started coming back on around 11 AM or so (the power went out about 9:20). One area that received it was where I live. Another was the area where I work. The core of the city, however, still has no electricity... and apparently no backup power sources either, hence the traffic lights all being out. Good times. :p

    Assuming everyone around here has experienced power outages at some point in their lives: what are the usual causes, what's the longest you've ever been without power, etc.?
     
  2. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    It's not as common in the UK as it is in America (and possibly Canada) because the power grid here is established with a lot more organisation and sense - whereas it's kinda just a chaotic melee in America (like bandwidth too, actually - the UK's got a much better infrastructure that lends itself to better servers but it's more expensive).

    We have had the occasional outage though. I remember the only real one we had back home was a good few years ago - and it just had to happen the night that Buffy was on. :/ Lame.
     
  3. Around here the normal causes are accidents knocking down poles or transformers blowing up during strenuous use. We are a bit more tame, but you get the normal horde of idiots who don't seem to understand basic traffic laws and the like.

    The two biggest blackouts I can remember was once back when I was in gradeschool we were without power for like a week or something after a huge windstorm knocked out power all over the place, but we had a generator so we at least had a refrigerator and freezer working for about 1/2 the time.

    The second one was actually the biggest, and most people should remember it. About 4-5 years ago the massive brownout/blackout that hit pretty much the entire East Coast and reached all the way to the Midwest in the US that lasted maybe 4 days for us (though I know there were lots of other people that didn't have power for longer). It was quite humorous because a few of my friends and I had decided to go camping and then to Cedar Point (an amusement park) the next day. We ended up going to a motel instead for some reason that I totally don't remember, but we were just lazing around and all of a sudden the power went out all over the place. Needless to say we didn't end up going to Cedar Point! XD
     
  4. Magpie

    Magpie Feathered Overseer
    Staff Member Moderator

    I can honestly say that I've never experienced a blackout like you're all describing. I think the only one I have experienced was just a small one that only effected the street I live on, when I was about five or six. It was out all night. All I remember is going with my dad to the 24 hour shop nearby to buy candles XD

    I hate it when that happens. It happened to me the other day while I was coming home from work - it was complete chaos. It was almost like a game of 'who-dares-wins'. Not a pleasant experience.
     
  5. Well It's funny how America is supposed to have more blackouts because I only remember one that was a very long time ago.

    It wasn't much of a blackout. It only affected my neighborhood and only lasted a few hours. It was miserable because it was the hottest day ever at 98 degrees and the air conditioner was out in the middle of the day. :(

    I swear, whoever hit that pole was stupid. It was like he wanted to hit it. >:(
     
  6. This is funny, because I live near the East Coast, but no where near the ocean. We had a hurricane. A hurricane! Winds reached almost 80MPH. So, my mom left me and my little brother home to go to the store during the storm. Of course, that was when the power went out. We were kind of freaked out because there is a huge, dead tree right next to our house. And when I say huge, I mean huge.

    So when the tree started wobbling, we went in the basement, we didn't know if it was a tornado or what, since we didn't have power we couldn't watch the weather channel. Also, we we just scaredy cats, and I'm not afraid to admit to that.

    So my mom got back, storm over. We didn't have school for the next two days. We were still out of power when school opened again. So we were getting up at six in the morning and had to get ready in the dark. (If you are a girl- you understand why this is hard.)

    That night though, we didn't have anyway to cook food with the microwave or oven. So we went down to Wendy's to get some fast food. The line literally went all the way out into the parking lot inside, and all the way into the street for the drive through. So, what the heck were we supposed to do? Well, we ended up eating hot-dogs and nachos from the gas station :p That part was kinda fun, but when you had to eat like that for 4 days straight it got kind of old. We did buy some food, only non-perishables that didn't have to be cooked.

    Another thing I remember is the sound of a tree coming down. That's one of the things I will never forget. It was kind of scary, but kind of cool in a wierd way. I wish I would have gotten to see it fall, my brother did though.

    So that was really big. I mean, that storm will go down in history here. And now it's something I can laugh about. Playing cards on the floor in the dark. All of sleeping in the same room (kinda sucked... but it was kinda fun.) And eating Nachos and Hot-dogs for 4 days (I was glad when I went back to school, because school lunches were so much better than that.).

    And, recently, our electricty went out. Our furnace starts with electric. So we had no heat. It sucked. Especially when all the food rotted. Ha! We ended up putting the contents of the fridge outside because it was cold enough.


    Ha! It's 80 Degrees right now, and it's April. Out house has no air conditioning at all. Count your blessings.
     
  7. I only really remember one blackout in my life, which was when I was like, in second grade. Believe it or not, it was actually an enjoyable experience for me.

    It was just after Dinner, and we were all in our rooms. Now, in my old house, my bedroom had no windows, and as soon as the lights went out, I was really freaked out and ran downstairs to my parents, who told me to find flashlights. It was kind of fun after that, as my brother and I played flashlight tag while my parents were gathering candles.

    Then my parents had told us to come to the kitchen, and so we did, and I brought this bead kit we had. It allowed us to magically glue beads together in the shape of, in my case, a horse. Eventually we had to go to bed, and the next day I went to look at my creation and it was so ugly! It was like, pink and orange and red and maroon beads all mashed together.

    And that was my only experience with blackouts.
     
  8. Shiny Lyni

    Shiny Lyni 2016 Singles Football

    Well, this just so happened at the time when I was on vacation at Hawaii (and so was Obama, actually. We were on the same island, BUT ANYWAYS).

    Well, it was the first full day I actually stayed in Hawaii. That night, my parents were uploading their piccus into the computer, when suddenly, all the power went out. Our light just went "poof!" and the computer screen darkened to save energy. I rushed out of the window (as did my parents) and saw lights on the mountain or volcano or whatever in the distance.

    Then the lights started going out one by one.

    I highly doubt it was people turning off their house lights or something; then there would still be street lights and traffic lights. But eventually, around 9 pm in Hawaii, there was no light at all on the whole island except maybe in the airport and wherever there were private generators.

    Well it was night, so my parents and I went to sleep soon anyways (it was about 1 back home, so I was reeeeeaaaaally tired).

    We woke up at around 4 and took a drive outside to Waikiki just for fun because none of us could sleeps anymore. The lights were still out on the whole island after, what, seven hours? The place was basically in chaos; couldn't get anywhere. There were these little ABC shops for tourists for staple items and souvenirs and stuffs. The customers were all led by a worker, one by one, around the shop, getting their needs or wants, by flashlight.

    The light came back around 6, when the sun was coming up. By then my parents and I were on this lookout place where they used to go on a lot back when they lived here.

    That was probably one of my more epic blackout experiences. Though where I live, we get them probably once every half-a-year or so, at least. Not much, but meh.
     
  9. One time in my freshman year of high school, on the first day of the second week, we were sent away at the door because the power went out. However, many were picked up by parents, so many phone calls had to be made.

    However, my parents could not be contacted, so I had to wait 'til four to be picked up, as I was often picked up due to extracuricular activities I would have normally had. Thankfully, I had my DS, so I spent the day exploring the dark sections of the hall and gym they had confined us into, using it as a flashlight.

    Notably, I bred my Eeveeloutions that day on Diamond, hatched them all, and evolved them all. It was productive, if not in an academic way, at least. :p

    Another time, in my sophmore year, the transformers for about the whole city blew, but instead of repeating the previous year's fiasco, we had class almost normally, except for computer lab and stuff like that.

    Nothing really dramatic except for when storms knock out the power, which happens about three or four times a year.
     
  10. Usually here in Arizona, blackouts are usually caused by monsoon storms. Which we hardly have anymore. I do remeber one time last year, all the homes with in a mile or two of the school had their power out. My girlfriend and some of her friends had to get ready in the dark..anyway, my house is few miles from the school, so the power wasn't out. I got to school, and people told me if the power was out for a whole period (55 minutes) we'd go home. Guess what happened? A minute (THE minute) before we had to go home, the damn power came back on. X|

    My ac was out for a whole week once. THis is Arizona...it was July. 120 degrees out. At least I have a pool. I'm suprised it hasn't gotten to 120 this year yet. Usually does by the end of April. But it's been in the mid 80s which is nice.
     
  11. Prof. Cinders

    Prof. Cinders Mathemagician
    Staff Member Administrator

    I think the longest blackout I've ever experienced was a few years back, just before dinner. We'd already finished the cooking, so that was no problem, but some of us nearly started eating with two forks, since we couldn't see what we were grabbing ^^"

    The scariest, though, was while I was at school about a year ago. The power station for the university down the road caught fire, and huge plumes of poisonous smoke started drifting our way. We were all told to go to our form rooms, and close all the windows etc. Problem was, I was in a separate building to the rest of the school, so when we were told to go to the hall instead, we had to run between buildings.

    Eventually we managed to get home, and the fire was on the news. Apparently someone died in there. :/
     
  12. I didn't know America's system was more chaotic than the UK's. But that's only because every major blackout I've experienced was weather related--severe thunderstorms, Tornados, and ice storms--situations that really can't be helped.

    The most recent major blackout I'd experienced was an ice storm about five years ago. It pretty much crippled the southeast with fallen trees, ice on the roads, and horrific airport delays (Hartsfield, a major international airport, is in Atlanta). I think we were without power for a week, but some areas were in the dark for far longer if they caught the worst of the ice storm.
     
  13. I usually don't get real blackouts like some of you get, since you can't exactly get an ice storm in the middle of the desert XD.

    Though I get power cuts that last half an hour at a time more often than others, since the power breaker at our house is terrible. You have no idea how many times I had tried to put up a post on pokecharms, only to have the power go out and make me do it all over again.
     
  14. Well I'm not used to hot weather. I usually have really mild weather around here. Here it's gotten to 90.

    We just had a black out. Well acually we're in one now. I'm using my laptop now. It's pretty boring though. It's just hot. :(
     
  15. Blackouts are fantastic, unlike the band named after them. They suck more than a whore on a weekend.
     
  16. Last winter we had a huge snowstorm that was pretty much on and off for all of January. We lost power for three days, while the streets above and below us had it back in a matter of hours. We ran out of oil in our lantern ran out on the second day, so we huddled around a crappy gas fireplace with blankets and read. Other parts of town didn't get any back for a while.

    The power came back when I was asleep. And ALL the lights were on.
     
  17. I seem to experience a power out once every two months. The longest one I ever had was when our house was hit by Hurricane Ike and the power was out for two weeks. I hate it when the power comes back on, though, because when that happens there's this earsplitting screech that goes through the whole house.
     
  18. About a week ago, there was a power outage here. Then a few days later, a huge thunder storm. As odd as it may seem, the thunder storm didn't cause a power outage.
     
  19. Just yesturday, at a family cookout, I was at he computer with my cousin when the power shut off.

    It came as no surprise, as a massive storm had rolled through with monsoon-like rains and winds of up to 55 MPH. And it didn't help that the grill was on the patio, which had a leaky roof. :(

    But the power turned on after an hour. Turns out my house lost power at one point, but came on before we got home, for the Wii was disconnected from Wi-Fi and the desktop requested 'How to Start Up'.

    Never got why it did htat. :D


    -AL
     
  20. The longest one I've gone through was when Hurricane Charley hit Florida... My house was right in the path of the eye, and we got one hell of a bashing. Like, we'd be driving down some road a few days after, and there would just be a gigantic tree blocking our way. We had no power for about six days, and it had to be a humid 95 degrees out... Ugh, so much sweating. Our school was out for quite a while, and by the time it actually started up again, I had power. I learned something that week: AC is possibly my best friend ever.
     
  21. Ditto. My sister and brother were freaking out (they're both older than me lulz) and I was sitting in my top bunk, watching the lightning storm with the window open (I was, like, 8!). My sister pulled me out of bed (i was 4 feet, or something around there, but only weighed 60 pounds) and dragged me downstairs to my parents' room where me, the dog, my brother, my sister, and my mom huddled together on one bed. I just wanted to see teh purtyful lightning! Or sleep... can't remember.
     
  22. Blackouts are so common here in the Philippines that if we have one its no surprise ;D the longest blackout we had was three days (A tree fell on the electric wires because of a storm) it was okay, i can survive three days without electricity but not two days without water. (what do you call it when there's no water? "water outage"? well, that's pretty common here to)

    Weird fact, in the Philippines blackouts are known as "Brownouts" ;D

    Whenever we have blackouts we put up some candles open the front door and just lie around the living room. Board games, Mp3players, a Psp and a DS help pass the time :D
     
  23. baratron

    baratron Moderator of Elder Scrolls
    Staff Member Moderator

    I find the title of this topic kinda confusing because here, a blackout means when you fall unconscious unexpectedly. Fainting or a seizure, y'know? Or at least when you're dizzy and everything suddenly goes black and you *think* you're going to faint. We just have power cuts :).

    I suspect the UK's National Grid is easier to control than the US or Canada's simply because we're a much smaller country. How bad things are in North America probably depends on whether you live in the middle of a city or in the middle of nowhere. New York City, for example, rarely has a major power cut - but my friend in Rochester, a middle-sized town in upstate New York, has them frequently during ice and snow storms in the winter.
     
  24. sheesheesh

    sheesheesh Guest

    I've experienced a few power outages within my three Olympiads of life, most recently from too many AC units plugged in. The freakiest one I've been in started with a blizzard, which ended up knocking the power out for a few hours. Within that time period, I would often be playing my Game Boy Advanced SP. When the power came back, everyone got ready for bed with no knowledge of the time. Luckily, it got everyone in my school out of "singing" gay holiday songs.
     
  25. Power in my area (Kansas) is only out whenever a tree crushes a power line or something like that. The longest it's been out that I can remember is about 2 hours or so.
     

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